The American Bus Association (ABA) selected Louisville, Ky. to host ABA’s Marketplace 2016, Jan. 9 to 12, 2016, at the Kentucky International Convention Center in downtown Louisville.
ABA’s Marketplace in 2016 is the organization’s 38th annual gathering, but it marks the first time Louisville has hosted this event.
“The American Bus Association is always thrilled when we can bring new cities into the ABA family,” said ABA President and CEO Peter J. Pantuso, CTIS. “Louisville was selected after an exhaustive bid process where several cities submitted proposals to host the ABA's Marketplace. Louisville has so many great places to see including the Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory, the Kentucky Science Center, the Muhammad Ali Center and, of course, the Kentucky Derby Museum and historic Churchill Downs Racetrack.”
More than 3,000 attendees are expected to attend Marketplace 2016. Marketplace is the show where business gets done, generating nearly $80 million dollars for the delegates, suppliers and host city in 2012. Officials estimate that ABA’s Marketplace will bring an immediate, direct economic impact of $4.4 million by hosting the conference, but as has been the case with other Marketplace cities, there is the potential for much more future business after showcasing the city to tour operators.
“Louisville already has a lot of options for tour operators, and we continue to see tremendous growth,” said Jim Wood, president and CEO of the Louisville Convention & Visitors Bureau. “By 2016, ABA can expect to see an expanded bourbon experience with new distilleries along Main Street in addition to the attractions and restaurants that draw visitors to Louisville every year.”
There are more than 3,800 first-class hotel rooms within a short distance of the Kentucky International Convention Center, and 2,300 of those are connected to the facility by an enclosed walking bridge.
ABA’s Marketplace 2013 is scheduled for Jan. 5 to 9 in Charlotte, N.C. In 2014, Nashville, Tenn., will host ABA’s Marketplace Jan. 17 to 21 in downtown Nashville at the new Music City Center. The following year, Marketplace 2015 will be held in St. Louis, Mo., Jan. 10 to 13 at the America's Center Convention Complex.